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Nats turn to Lannan again

Oct 1, 2012, 1:00 PM EDT

US Presswire photo
John Lannan is 4-0 in five starts for the Nationals this season.

"John's my guy. I like John. And John can pitch. He led our club last year in wins." — Davey Johnson on John Lannan, March 26

When Davey Johnson made that pronouncement during the final week of spring training, announcing John Lannan would open the season as the Nationals' No. 5 starter, little did he or anyone else know how the next six months would unfold.

One week later, of course, Johnson informed Lannan he would be opening the season in Syracuse, not Washington, a surprise demotion that prompted the left-hander to request a trade.

Six months later, Lannan remains a National. After spending the majority of the season at Class AAA, he has been back in the big leagues since Sept. 1, reinserted into the rotation after Stephen Strasburg was shut down.

And now, he'll be asked to pitch the Nationals to the NL East title.Read more »

148 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. natsfan1a - Oct 1, 2012 at 1:07 PM

    Go for it, John-Boy! I'll be there to cheer you on. btw, the $2 WaPo online ticket special seems to be down to upper infield gallery seats now. I'll be in that area with my hubby and some friends. Come on down, er, up. :-)

  2. MicheleS - Oct 1, 2012 at 1:20 PM

    John will get this done.

  3. NatsJack in Florida - Oct 1, 2012 at 1:21 PM

    In John We Trust!

  4. Feel Wood - Oct 1, 2012 at 1:22 PM

    Summoned from Syracuse to pitch the second half of a July 21 doubleheader against a Braves team that had trimmed its deficit in the NL East to 1 1/2 games, he tossed seven strong innings to earn the victory and start a six-game Nationals winning streak.Mark, you keep writing this but it's simply not true. Lannan most certainly did not pitch seven strong innings in that game against the Braves on July 21. He pitched a terrible first inning. Single, GIDP, walk, double, single, walk. Barely escaped giving up more than two runs by getting the third out on a fly to deep center – not something you want from a ground ball pitcher. Then, to his credit, he righted the ship and pitched six strong innings after that to notch the win. So say he had a strong seven inning start, but don't say he pitched seven strong innings. Would you say Gio pitched six strong innings when he got his 21st win against the Phils? No? I didn't think so.

  5. ehay2k - Oct 1, 2012 at 1:44 PM

    The first inning was strong, just in a bad way!

  6. Scooter - Oct 1, 2012 at 1:45 PM

    I really enjoyed reading this post. Thanks! You're a terrific writer, Mr. Z.

  7. Theophilus T. S. - Oct 1, 2012 at 1:46 PM

    Feel Wood is parsing hairs. Notwithstanding, Lannan's ability to scare everybody to death in the first few innings is undeniable.Having said that, I hope he pitches a great game tonight because (A) I really want to clinch; (B) if he throws a really good game, Johnson and Rizzo will give serious consideration to throwing EStnx overboard for the NLDS. When forced to choose between two mediocre pitchers, pick the one least likely to throw up all over himself on the pitching mound.

  8. blovy8 - Oct 1, 2012 at 1:47 PM

    Get over yourself feel wood, it's just giving the reader more information than saying "game" or "start". It's the low total of runs given up within those innings that was strong. I suppose since he threw some pitches harder than others, he must not have "tossed" all of them either, right?

  9. Steady Eddie - Oct 1, 2012 at 1:48 PM

    More than poetic symmetry, it would be deeply fitting for John to win tonight. Fitting to secure the first MLB title in 79 years at the hands of the guy who was as much of a reasonably solid, workmanlike starter we had through the darkest days of the 100+ loss seasons (Livo was there before and after), who learned and did improve over time (especially after being sent down last season), and who was then rendered almost superfluous by the success of the plan whose worst downside he endured (his losses in most past years were equally due to the lousy hitting and worse fielding behind him as to his own inconsistent pitching).Only thing else needed to make such a win fitting would be for Zim to get the game-winning hit.

  10. greg - Oct 1, 2012 at 1:48 PM

    semantics. people say that all the time, feel wood. you look at the results in the long view. i promise you people have said strasburg pitched 7 dominant innings in a game before and nobody got offended 2 months later and said, "hey, wait, one of those seven innings wasn't dominant! he gave up a few hits and a run or two!"

  11. hiramhover - Oct 1, 2012 at 1:51 PM

    I see your point, Feel Wood, but I also have to agree that you're splitting semantic hairs. Taken as a whole,the 7 innings were strong–2ER (whether or not they both came in one inning), 5H, 2BB. I've been rooting for John for years, and will be happy to do so again tonight.

  12. Natslifer - Oct 1, 2012 at 2:00 PM

    Whether he's on the postseason roster or not seems to be important here mentally. If he really is trying to pitch this team into a division crown but knows it's the last start he'll ever have with the Nats (as could be implied by the situation) – that's a very large burden to bear. It's a very different story if he's got a spot on the postseason roster. Very interesting stuff – I might have missed it but has Davey said anything about lefty long relief (Gorzo's the obvious candidate?) for the playoff roster?

  13. NatsLady - Oct 1, 2012 at 2:05 PM

    Looks like a chilly, wet night in Pittsburgh. It will be hard on Chipper's knees (if he even plays).Pittsburgh Forecasthttp://www.bing.com/weather/today?q=weather+forecast+pittsburgh+pa&unit=F&FORM=DTPWEO&qpvt=weather+forecast+pittsburgh+pa

  14. natsfan1a - Oct 1, 2012 at 2:05 PM

    Oh, Zimm, if you're reading this. I know you like to do things like that on holidays and all. Well, just fyi, today is my birthday. Just saying. You know. In case you're reading this and all. (Hi, Davey!)Only thing else needed to make such a win fitting would be for Zim to get the game-winning hit.

  15. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 1, 2012 at 2:06 PM

    Theophilus T. S. said… Feel Wood is parsing hairs. Notwithstanding, Lannan's ability to scare everybody to death in the first few innings is undeniable.October 01, 2012 9:46 AM Let's also be fair to Lannan and the dire situation that transpired. The night before, the Nats jump out to a 9-0 lead and Davey keeps Strasburg in too long and the lead disappears and the Nats lose in heartbreaking fashion and their 3 1/2 game lead drops to 2 1/2.In the 1st game of the doubleheader the next day on July 21st, Sheets and their bullpen shutout the Nats and the lead drops to 1 1/2.Lannan is now in a crucial, almost must-win game in the 2nd game of the doubleheader that if the Nats lose, the lead drops to a 1/2 game. Momentum is in already in Barves favor.Bourn starts off the game with a bunt single. Lannan induces a doubleplay on Prado. Then Lannan walks Heyward and pitches to Chipper who goes oppo and hits a ball over RF Michael Morse. Would it have been caught by Werth? It wasn't the "A" lineup in there. Lombo in LF, Bernie in CF and Morse in RF. Freeman than fights off a single and it drops in for a 2-0 lead. After that, Lannan pitched a gem. Davey left Lannan in for the 7th and he struck out the pinch-hitter, struck out Bourn and got Prado to groundout to finish his night.Yes, a gem especially considering the circumstances and to this point in the season, that was the game that saved the Nats season in my opinion.

  16. ExposedinDC - Oct 1, 2012 at 2:06 PM

    Does anyone know When the playoff roster has to be named, finding it hard to believe if we're playing the Braves that John Lannan won't be on that roster in some way shape or form.

  17. natsfan1a - Oct 1, 2012 at 2:07 PM

    Ditto. :-)I've been rooting for John for years, and will be happy to do so again tonight.

  18. NatsLady - Oct 1, 2012 at 2:08 PM

    As far as I know, Davey hasn't said anything about the postseason roster other than he "doesn't have a doghouse." I'm not sure pitching his possible last game as a Nat is harder to bear than some of Lannan's other burdens (riding the bus in the chill of Syracuse). Assuming the Nats non-tender him–and I do assume that–he is showcasing himself to a lot of teams by his September performance. That is money in the bank and a rotation spot on a .500 team that is looking to contend next year.

  19. NatsFanGino - Oct 1, 2012 at 2:10 PM

    I think I'd be ok with Lannan over Edwin next season.. Cheaper and I don't think there would be much drop off if any.

  20. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 1, 2012 at 2:19 PM

    "John's my guy. I like John. And John can pitch. He led our club last year in wins." — Davey Johnson on John Lannan, March 26I still believe Davey meant what he said -but- Davey has a boss in Mike Rizzo and Mike wanted Detwiler, and on this one, Rizzo got his way and Rizzo was probably right as you needed a MLB ready arm in waiting in Syracuse and Rizzo traded away Milone and Peacock and the Nats didn't have any other options until someone emerged like Duke. It was just handled poorly and was a tad embarassing that Davey made the statement and days later Lannan was sent off to AAA.

  21. NatsLady - Oct 1, 2012 at 2:25 PM

    I don't think Edwin is coming back. It's just economics. The FA class of pitchers is poor, and he will get a mult-year offer from another team. My view is that Rizzo will make him a qualifying, one-year offer, which if he declines will mean the Nats get the draft pick. If he accepts that would be GREAT (in my opinion) but I doubt he will.

  22. Scooter - Oct 1, 2012 at 2:27 PM

    1a, I know that Potter Curtis reads here, so if nothing else, he can pass on your info to Zimmerman.

  23. Doc - Oct 1, 2012 at 2:35 PM

    Nice article, Mark.Hard to get some of the personal flavor, when the subject makes himself unavailable for interview.Lannan's a trooper, and it will always be interesting to follow his career, wherever he lands.

  24. Feel Wood - Oct 1, 2012 at 2:38 PM

    Ghost Of Steve M. said… Theophilus T. S. said… Feel Wood is parsing hairs. Notwithstanding, Lannan's ability to scare everybody to death in the first few innings is undeniable.October 01, 2012 9:46 AM Let's also be fair to Lannan and the dire situation that transpired.Right. Which is why simply saying "he pitched seven strong innings" is understating the magnitude of what he did that night. He stepped into a tough situation and at first turned it the wrong direction, looking like he was ready to lose it. Not unlike what Jackson did Friday and Det did yesterday. But unlike them, Lannan did not lose it. He turned it around and helped his team finish the game strong. Describing that as "seven strong innings" is like describing a walk where you fall into quicksand only to extricate yourself and still make it to your destination on time as "a brisk walk."

  25. Theophilus T. S. - Oct 1, 2012 at 2:38 PM

    A "one-year qualifying offer" to EStnx is $13MM. That's like counting to 2 1/2 after pulling the pin on a hand grenade. Do you want to bet you can dump the remainder of his salary before July 31?For about $9MM, they could probably buy Jake Peavy, and for $4MM more they could probably find a smoke-throwing LH relief pitcher.By the end of next season, when Beachy returns, Atlanta's pitching will probably be better than ours, unless the Nats upgrade. Resigning EStnx is not an upgrade. Even if only to save money, I'd be willing to ride w/ Garcia or Perry in the 5-spot.

  26. SCNatsFan - Oct 1, 2012 at 2:39 PM

    Win the division for us John then go get paid somewhere else. A win win.

  27. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 1, 2012 at 2:43 PM

    NatsLady said… I don't think Edwin is coming back. It's just economics. The FA class of pitchers is poor, and he will get a mult-year offer from another team. My view is that Rizzo will make him a qualifying, one-year offer, which if he declines will mean the Nats get the draft pick. If he accepts that would be GREAT (in my opinion) but I doubt he will. Totally agree with you. I still think the Nats lack controllable arms with options. Duke isn't under control and Perry is out of options. Maybe Christian Garcia is the answer, maybe not.The 5 arms under team control for next year is:Stras, Gio, JZim, Det, and Lannan and that will be Lannan's last year of team control.

  28. Feel Wood - Oct 1, 2012 at 2:44 PM

    Natslifer said… Whether he's on the postseason roster or not seems to be important here mentally. If he really is trying to pitch this team into a division crown but knows it's the last start he'll ever have with the Nats (as could be implied by the situation) – that's a very large burden to bear. It's a very different story if he's got a spot on the postseason roster.Let's be clear. Tonight is Lannan's audition for the postseason roster. To paraphrase Bob Dole, he knows it, Davey knows it, and the American people know it.

  29. natsfan1a - Oct 1, 2012 at 2:46 PM

    Then I'm good as gold. He always was my fave, and can he ever position outfielders. ;-)Scooter said… 1a, I know that Potter Curtis reads here, so if nothing else, he can pass on your info to Zimmerman. October 01, 2012 10:27 AM

  30. NatsLady - Oct 1, 2012 at 2:46 PM

    I wouldn't mind having EJax back for $13MM on a 1-year deal while you wait for Meyer, try out Garcia as a starter, and see if the Perry experiment works. Davey knows he is short on SP talent. I just don't think Edwin will accept a one-year deal.

  31. blovy8 - Oct 1, 2012 at 2:47 PM

    Peavy's probably getting more than 9 million in this market. If Jackson pitches well in the postseason, you'd have to believe they'd make that offer. I like Lannan as much as anyone, but they've set that guy up to take a beating in arbitration. Six major league starts and a lot of AAA probably aren't going to add up to five million again. But how do you go into the hearing offering him a salary cut? I think they part company, sadly.

  32. Feel Wood - Oct 1, 2012 at 2:49 PM

    "John's my guy. I like John. And John can pitch. He led our club last year in wins." — Davey Johnson on John Lannan, March 26I still believe Davey meant what he said -but- Davey has a boss in Mike Rizzo and Mike wanted DetwilerNot exactly. Rizzo wanted to keep Detwiler AND Wang AND Lannan, and the only way he could do that was the way he did. If you want to put the blame on anyone for this scenario playing out, put it on Lannan, Detwiler and Wang for not sucking in spring training and making it a non-issue.

  33. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 1, 2012 at 2:54 PM

    NatsLady said… I wouldn't mind having EJax back for $13MM on a 1-year deal while you wait for Meyer, try out Garcia as a starter, and see if the Perry experiment works. Davey knows he is short on SP talent. I just don't think Edwin will accept a one-year deal.The book isn't finished on EJax but if he were finished, you are right, he wouldn't accept a 1 year deal.Now then, if he figures things out and pitches like he did in that 1st appearance against the Reds which was 8 innings of mastery and does that consistently like what Rizzo thought he was getting different story, buh buh but, that word consistently is the EJax problem. He is so darn inconsistent. One day he's pitch like an ACE and the next like a disgrACE. Now I think I know why other teams keep bailing on him. His stats by the end of the season trend to a #3-#4 and he's expensive for a #4.

  34. Section 222 - Oct 1, 2012 at 2:56 PM

    Even if only to save money, I'd be willing to ride w/ Garcia or Perry in the 5-spot.After a playoff season, why are we talking about saving money? 2013 is the year right? Time to go all out to finally make the playoffs for the first time since 1933. Oh wait…My prediction is that our rotation next year will not be worse (on paper at least) than this year. I don't know if that means that E-Jax is in it (probably not, given the contract he wants and will probably get from someone, but he will certainly get a qualifying offer, but Lannan isn't. I will also predict that Lannan doesn't make the playoff roster unless the Braves are our opponent and Davey decides he wants to go with a very lefty heavy rotation. I expect that Det will get a playoff start before Lannan will, and Gorzo will be in the playoff bullpen, as will Garcia).Those are just predictions so no need to argue with me Feel. You're entitled to differ as you so often do.

  35. Exposremains - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:00 PM

    I think if they add a pitcher it will be via trade(same type as gio, young, controllable.)

  36. Unknown - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:00 PM

    I'd take Lannan over Jackson. We made the playoffs this year with Jackson's sub-.500 performance, surely we could do it next year with Lannan, should he not crack .500. And I think with our middle infield, he could easily crack .500. Assuming Rizzo doesn't have something else cooking up for the pitching staff in the off season, Lannan should get his shot. Especially if he clinches tonight.

  37. natsfan1a - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:02 PM

    Wait, why are we talking next year, anyway? There's still plenty of baseball to be played in October. :-)

  38. Exposremains - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:03 PM

    One thing Im sure, no more CMW. Not even on a minor league so they can resist the temptation of bringing him up.

  39. peric - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:06 PM

    Totally agree with you. I still think the Nats lack controllable arms with options. Duke isn't under control and Perry is out of options. Maybe Christian Garcia is the answer, maybe not.Who are Nate Karns, Alex Meyer, Daniel Rosenbaum? Just to name a few?Don't underestimate these guys especially Karns who was pitcher of the year for the system in 2012. All will likely be pitching in AA/AAA NEXT season. And Dave isn't Riggleman he has been known to call up and use young talent, he won't defer to veterans the way Riggleman used to do.

  40. peric - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:10 PM

    I'd take Lannan over Jackson. We made the playoffs this year with Jackson's sub-.500 performance, surely we could do it next year with Lannan, should he not crack .500.Can Lannan throw 94-97 even in the late innings? How many no hitters has Lannan thrown? How many playoffs has Lannan appeared in? World Series? And then you look at Lannan's walks and strike outs. He still has control issues.The one distinct advantage he has shown is the zero home runs. That's it. Even his ERA and advanced stats are worse than Jackson's.And Dave likes to "rescue" Lannan when it looks like the hitters have figured him out and are about to break out for a big inning. Just like Riggleman used to. Typically that happens in the fifth inning. Rarely does he get beyond that.Probably Cat's idea when all is said and done. Not Rizzo's.

  41. NatsLady - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:11 PM

    Expos, if I'm CMW I'm going to Japan for a year. If he pitches great over there–and is injury-free–it's a story. If not, he retires and the story is over.Here is an outsider's (bleacherreport.com) thoughts on Jackson.A quick glance at his season statistics may not reveal as much, but Edwin Jackson has indeed pitched well for the Washington Nationals this season.He is 9-11 with a 4.13 ERA, 162 strikeouts, a 1.22 WHIP and a .243 batting average against. Jackson's win-loss record can be explained in part by a run support average of 3.90. That is worst on the staff and 11th-worst in the National League.But the Washington Nationals acquired Edwin Jackson for the postseason. Quality starting pitching is vital to the postseason success of any ballclub, and Jackson has provided just that in the past.Last season, he helped lead the St. Louis Cardinals to the 11th World Series title in franchise history, winning his start against the Philadelphia Phillies in the NLDS and finishing 1-1 with a 5.60 ERA in four starts during the 2011 postseason.Jackson's postseason experience becomes especially important for the Washington Nationals. The rest of the starting rotation does not have any playoff experience whatsoever, and on top of that, they are without ace Stephen Strasburg. Jackson will have to fill those two voids as best he can.After Friday night's abysmal performance against the Cardinals in his return to St. Louis, the pressure is mounting for the veteran right-hander. If Edwin cracks, the Nationals are in trouble.

  42. peric - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:12 PM

    AND Wang AND Lannan, and the only way he could do that was the way he didActually, this season Wang was Davey's idea. As he has stated a plethora of times? That's why they resigned him.

  43. Steady Eddie - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:13 PM

    Ghost — your 10:54 really captures the point about EJax. This scouting and coaching staff thinks they can get the best out of everyone, especially with Cat and the starters, and they mostly have (Det's recent meltdowns notwithstanding) — but as you said, EJax remains the same frustrating pitcher so many other teams have invested in and then passed on. They thought they could solve that but at least this year, they clearly haven't. Now perhaps — I'm just speculating here, no overt signs of this but there wouldn't be at this point in the season — they think after seeing the experience with EJax this season they can figure out a mental approach to get his mechanics more consistent. That would be the only rational basis on which to try to bring him back for more than one year, or even maybe for one year (latter depends on what the FA alternatives are).On the other hand — the only other teams who might want to make a multiyear investment are rebuilding teams that are so bad, they'd be happy to get the relative stability of EJax's repeated and predictable inconsistency. Will he want that?It may hinge, as blovy8 said, on how he does in the postseason. If he stays the same EJax he's been this year, it's hard to see a contending team that wants to commit themselves to more than a year of that.

  44. NatsLady - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:14 PM

    You also might like this profile of Werth as the most important player for the Nats in the postseason.Coupled with Bryce Harper at the top of the lineup for almost every game since August 17, Werth has become even more valuable to the Nats as a leadoff hitter. His ability to start the offense on the right foot will be crucial to solving the stellar starting pitching they will face in the playoffs.The Nats can apply pressure from the start, and that begins with Werth's ability to put the ball in play as well as get on base. Through Sunday, he has a strikeout percentage (SO%) of only 16.7%, a batting average on balls in play (BAbip) of .353 and a .387 OBP.Once on base, he is a smart, aggressive baserunner. Jayson has a mere eight stolen bases but has only been caught stealing twice. Plus, he has 10 bases taken on fly balls, passed balls, wild pitches, balks and defensive indifference, and he takes an extra base on a single or double 38 percent of the time.But what makes Jayson Werth the most important Nationals' player come playoff time is his playoff experience. He has played 44 postseason games and is the only Nationals starting position player to play in the World Series, let alone win one. In his postseason career, Jayson has hit .268 with 13 home runs, 26 RBI and a .379 OBP. During his two postseasons that resulted in a trip to the World Series, Werth hit .292 with nine home runs, 17 RBI and a .395 OBP.Jayson Werth needs to show the Washington Nationals how to win in the postseason from his first swing of the bat.

  45. NatsNut - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:14 PM

    x3natsfan1a said… Ditto. :-)I've been rooting for John for years, and will be happy to do so again tonight.

  46. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:16 PM

    Peric brings the winds of Lannan-hate. Medlen throws high 80's to 91 on top speed and averaging below Lannan on top speed, how do you like those apples! You are way too impressed with Velo. I'm not saying its over-rated but if you have great stuff, that beats Velo every time.

  47. Feel Wood - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:17 PM

    Does anyone know When the playoff roster has to be named, finding it hard to believe if we're playing the Braves that John Lannan won't be on that roster in some way shape or form.Teams designate their active roster for each playoff series immediately before the series starts. That means they can field a different roster for each series, i.e. one-game wild card series, LDS, LCS and World Series. With all the injury loopholes, basically any player who was in the organization on 8/31 can be placed on the active roster for a playoff series. Given the way they've been performing lately, it's entirely possible Lannan could make the roster for the first series in place of either Jackson or Detwiler, and then be replaced by one of them in a subsequent series if he performs badly in the first series. Had both Detwiler and Jackson not crapped the bed in September, that would not have been possible. But now it is.

  48. bowdenball - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:17 PM

    Just want to make sure I've got this straight: people are advocating Lannan over Jackson for the rotation next year? Lannan, the guy with 4.88 K/9 and 3.58 BB/9 in five starts? Over Jackson, the guy with 7.97 K/9 and2.80 BB/9?Lannan's numbers in the majors don't look bad because he hasn't given up a single HR in five starts. That's unsustainable. He gave up a HR every 9 innings to AAA hitters this season and hovered around a similar mark for his five major leagues seasons before that.If Lannan comes significantly cheaper than Lannan and the club wants to spend all of its new money elsewhere, that's one thing. But don't tell me that the two guys give you about the same thing. There would be a SIGNIFICANT dropoff.

  49. peric - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:17 PM

    Coupled with Bryce Harper at the top of the lineup for almost every game since August 17, Werth has become even more valuable to the Nats as a leadoff hitter.Can't agree more … he finally found his niche' … where he fits … perfectly like a glove. I thought for sure he would again hate leading off … but you know I suspect that a lot has to do with Harper batting behind him and being a mentor for him … and soon Jayson will have someone else that he and Zim can tutor : Anthony Rendon.Hopefully, the FO won't ruin that by bringing in Bourn or a Bourn/Morgan type player who slaps hits and steals tons of bases … it would be a huge mistake. Don't fix what ain't broke.

  50. peric - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:18 PM

    Werth in the lead off spot makes him worth every single nickel they are paying him … even with the injuries.

  51. Another_Sam - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:19 PM

    If Lannan does get this done, he's a footnote forever in a historic season and his place in history is assured. If the doesn't, there's a footnote of a different kind established. IMHO.And Insiders, we've all got to be down there tonight. Otherwise, IMHO, we're pretenders.

  52. natsfan1a - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:20 PM

    Agree that it would be good to represent tonight. Disagree that anybody on here is a pretender. On a somewhat related note, looks like the Post's online $2 tix are sold out for tonight.

  53. peric - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:22 PM

    Peric brings the winds of Lannan-hate. Medlen throws high 80's to 91 on top speed and averaging below Lannan on top speed, how do you like those apples! I also happen to really like Tommy Milone and Danny Rosenbaum. Both have about the same velocity. The difference? They and Medlen truly are control artists. Lannan IS NOT that's why he has to be "rescued". And he does have one implosion in the mix already. That's just what he does. He is not as good a pitcher as Tommy Milone and I think Milone has more than proven that this season don't you think? without Milone the A's would not have made the playoffs. And he is the guy I thought should replace Lannan. Rizzo had other ideas and decided to sell half of his best prospects for Gio. Including Milone. Both teams benefitted.

  54. Unknown - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:22 PM

    Peric, there is no doubt Jackson's stuff is better than Lannan's when Jackson is on his game. However when Jackson is off, he looks more like a .000 pitcher than the career sub-.500 pitcher he is. When he's been "on" this year, he's looked more like he should be a 1.000 pitcher. Regardless of his stuff, his record speaks volumes. Lannan is not a power pitcher. With strong defense his ERA would've been much better all along, as that's how it works for a ground-ball guy. No one can argue about experience. Is Jackson worth paying more just for his playoff and world series experience? You may think so. By this time next year, everyone will have (at least) playoff experience.If you're going to pick on Lannan for lacking no-hitters, playoff appearances, and world series appearances, does the same treatment apply to our other pitchers?

  55. hiramhover - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:26 PM

    I know folks are down on EJax after Friday. So am I. But t's clear that the market doesn't value Lannan over EJax. Getting EJax for one yr for $11M was considered a coup for Rizzo; whether the Nats were willing to move Lannan or not this year, everyone agreed that they wouldn't get much in return given his $5M salary. EJax is inconsistent, but when he's on, he pitches like an ace, which is something seldom said of Lannan, who almost always merits a Molly Hatchet walk on song (Flirtin' with Disaster). He's also proven his durability, pitching more innings per game and per season over a longer period.I think the most likely course is the one that NatsLady suggested–the Nats make a qualifying offer, EJax turns it down to accept a multi-year deal elsewhere (perhaps at a lower annual average value), and the Nats get a draft pick. Everyone walks away pretty happy.

  56. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:27 PM

    Bowdenball, way too early to pick the 5th starter next year but fairly certain it won't be EJax as he is looking for a long-term deal.Lannan is still under team control for next season is the only point right now from my perspective.At the end of the day when you are evaluating your #5 is potential to get your team to win games and Lannan has always done that for this team but too many people want to compare him to players that he's not.

  57. peric - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:27 PM

    No one can argue about experience. Is Jackson worth paying more just for his playoff and world series experience? You may think so. By this time next year, everyone will have (at least) playoff experience.Yup, this is where the rubber hits the road. The rationale behind Rizzo and the Lerner's ponying up 11 million for Jackson. For that playoff experience and for a guy that could pick the team up when Stras gets shutdown. As he did for St. Louis last season when they effectively lost 2 of their top starters. And after this season you are absolutely correct. They won't need any experience playoff types anymore. They will all be battle tested and playoff ready.And that is why, again, they are going to go with the young starters (unless they manage to go out and get David Price a lefty) such as Nate Karns, Alex Meyer, Danny Rosenbaum, Ryan Perry, and Christian Garcia. Plenty of right handers and a good lefty in the wings.

  58. MJR - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:32 PM

    I've always admired, particularly this season, Lannan's even-keeled-ness (we can make up words in this blog, right?) and ability to learn from and bounce back from tough situations. Tonight's your night, John! Remember that the defense has your back and they would like nothing better than to help you stomp on the Fleas!

  59. peric - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:37 PM

    Lannan is still under team control for next season is the only point right now from my perspective.But, they aren't going to pay him Jackson money which is what he would get through arbitration.

  60. Feel Wood - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:37 PM

    If Lannan comes significantly cheaper than Lannan and the club wants to spend all of its new money elsewhere, that's one thing. But don't tell me that the two guys give you about the same thing. There would be a SIGNIFICANT dropoff.Jackson's career line: 203 starts, 69-71 W-L, 4.41 ERALannan's career line: 133 starts, 42-51 W-L, 4.01 ERAAdjusting the W-L for the fact that Lannan has pitched in front of much worse teams than Jackson has for his entire career, and adjusting the ERA for Jackson having pitched much of his career in the AL while Lannan has been in the NL, those lines look pretty similar. Definitely not a drop-off going from Jackson to Lannan.

  61. Feel Wood - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:41 PM

    peric said… Lannan is still under team control for next season is the only point right now from my perspective.But, they aren't going to pay him Jackson money which is what he would get through arbitration.No he wouldn't. Jackson is making $11M this year to Lannan's $5M. If Lannan gets any raise at all via arbitration, it will be small. He'd make $6M tops. Jackson won't sign for less than $12-$13M AAV, no matter where he goes.

  62. NatsLady - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:42 PM

    Another_Sam, I agree with you in principle, but I can't do it. Every time I take off work it costs me over $300. On a Monday, over $500. I am saving that money for the playoffs. There is already no trip to see the family this year.

  63. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 1, 2012 at 3:51 PM

    No one can argue about experience. Is Jackson worth paying more just for his playoff and world series experience? You may think so. By this time next year, everyone will have (at least) playoff experience.peric said… Yup, this is where the rubber hits the road. The rationale behind Rizzo and the Lerner's ponying up 11 million for Jackson. For that playoff experience and for a guy that could pick the team up when Stras gets shutdown. As he did for St. Louis last season when they effectively lost 2 of their top starters.So far, EJax hasn't been a stopper and his big game wins have been few and far between.Not even counting the shelling 2 days ago in St Louis where he labored the bullpen because he only lasted 1 inning was 2 weeks ago in Atlanta he gave up 4 runs in a loss in a "must win" type of game.Then the shelling on Sept 9th against the Marlins he goes 4 2/3 giving up 6 runs.He has had a horrific September so far except for the nice start against Milwaukee a week and a half ago that unfortunately was outdueled so all of his starts in September since Labor Day have ended up in losses (4 of them).

  64. MicheleS - Oct 1, 2012 at 4:20 PM

    FYI… I got my tickets just now. I never got an email or a tracking number

  65. NatsLady - Oct 1, 2012 at 4:25 PM

    Here is commentary on the five "luckiest" starting pitchers, from fangraphs.com. You will see it is fantasy oriented but still something to be concerned about for next season.Ross DetwilerIn his first full season as a starter, Detwiler has been quite the pleasant surprise for the Nats. Under the surface though, things don’t look as dandy. A fortunate HR/FB ratio and BABIP has allowed him to post an ERA just above 3.00 despite some soft skills. While the 16.8% LD% has likely helped to keep his BABIP down, his IFFB% is right at the league average and a strong GB% should also serve to inflate his BABIP. However, Detwiler has done a great job getting hitters to make contact with his pitches outside the zone. That assumed weak contact plus the low line drive rate have probably been more than enough to offset the high ground ball rate, but it’s hard to believe he would come close to repeating a .267 BABIP again. The GB% spike is good to see, but given his previous ground ball rates, it is more likely to regress a bit next year. As has been the theme for so many of these pitchers, a poor strikeout rate limits his fantasy ceiling and makes him someone to avoid.

  66. Laddie Blah Blah - Oct 1, 2012 at 4:27 PM

    "Had both Detwiler and Jackson not crapped the bed in September, that would not have been possible. But now it is."Yeah. Those guys have not stepped up when it mattered the most, and Lannan has. Unless I am imagining things, Lannan has improved his game. I used to dread his starts because he always took so much time, like he was afraid to throw a pitch, tried to paint the corners, walked too many people, and then had to come in to whoever was at the plate because there was no place to put him. Very often, that kind of approach ended in failure for him and the team.Now, I see a guy who is attacking hitters with his sinker, catching the plate and challenging them to hit a pitch that dips at the last second. His tempo is much, much faster than the one which used to drive Nats fans to distraction. The Lannan we are seeing now is just not the same one who was sent down to AAA. He's better.His sinker is the foundation of his game, and as long as he is catching the plate with it, and is getting the low strike call from the ump, he can operate. I have been checking John's demeanor on the mound. He is in complete control of himself out there, confident in his own ability and working like a professional who knows exactly what he is doing. His performances are not great, but they are workmanlike and effective. Both EJax and Detwiler have better stuff, but they do not have John's make-up. I don't know what got into him, but I can imagine what shock and disappointment can do to an experienced ML pitcher, the team's former no. 1 starter, who is sent down to AAA at the age of 27.

  67. JD - Oct 1, 2012 at 4:30 PM

    hey everyone. Who cares about next year's rotation when we are on the verge of a division title and a 97- 99 win season? Why don't we debate next year's rotation in the off season?

  68. MicheleS - Oct 1, 2012 at 4:32 PM

    NatsLady, no one will hold it against you for not going to tonight's game. You probably have been to more than most posters & well, you have to pay for the games that will happen after today!!!!!

  69. Dave - Oct 1, 2012 at 4:34 PM

    @MicheleS, was a signature required for the strip tickets? Sounds like I need to stop by the house before Nats Park today.

  70. MicheleS - Oct 1, 2012 at 4:34 PM

    Yes, Signature required from UPS.

  71. JD - Oct 1, 2012 at 4:36 PM

    Laddie, Unfortunately the numbers don't support what you say. Lannan is still walking 4 per 9 innings and striking out 5. That's not a good ratio and once the balls start leaving the yard at a an expected rate the results will return to the career norm. In any event; go Lannan. Go Nats.

  72. Scooter - Oct 1, 2012 at 4:37 PM

    Nice link, NatsLady. I guess Colbert showed that ballperson just how old school and prestigious he is. Wonder what the kid did to [tick] him off?

  73. NatsLady - Oct 1, 2012 at 4:41 PM

    I like velo and power, but Homer Bailey pitched a no-hitter and never went above 93 and was 91-92 most of the game. That is why I am not too worried about Clip. You have to be smart about sequences and have location and movement on the FB.

  74. Scooter - Oct 1, 2012 at 4:42 PM

    MicheleS said…NatsLady, no one will hold it against you for not going to tonight's game. You probably have been to more than most posters …Which is not to imply that even that matters, right? I mean, can't everyone just have his or her own fandom, for his or her own reasons?I promise, I don't intend to make this a thing. Just … gah. Let's not get all fannier* than thou, okay?* Yes, MJR, we can make up words. Heck, for some of us, it's practically our raison d'coming-here.

  75. NatsLady - Oct 1, 2012 at 4:42 PM

    BTW, "Homer" is a good mid-Western name. A couple of Homers in my family tree.

  76. Feel Wood - Oct 1, 2012 at 4:44 PM

    MicheleS said… FYI… I got my tickets just now. I never got an email or a tracking numberI never got an email either. But when I called my rep this morning she told me my tickets had been shipped on Friday and she gave me the tracking number. I won't be home to sign for the package when the UPS guy gets there, but apparently I can pay five bucks to UPS and have the shipment redirected to the UPS store within walking distance of my house. Whoop de doo.

  77. NatsLady - Oct 1, 2012 at 4:45 PM

    Scooter, TY. I took off on impulse for that Wednesday double header. I sincerely, sincerely hope not to take off for a Thursday or Friday game this week. If I have to, I will. But I DON'T WANT TO… Clinch it, boys, clinch it. Go Pirates!

  78. Scooter - Oct 1, 2012 at 4:46 PM

    And oh my gosh, it was like years ago, but I'm still laughing at Bzl's reverse Woo Hoo from last night. That was awesome.

  79. Scooter - Oct 1, 2012 at 4:48 PM

    I hope you don't have to too, NL. If you do, though, just remember to 1) check the weather.:-)

  80. MicheleS - Oct 1, 2012 at 4:48 PM

    Scooter.. just wanted to show support since there have been posts questioning people's status as a fan.

  81. bowdenball - Oct 1, 2012 at 4:52 PM

    JD said…"hey everyone.Who cares about next year's rotation when we are on the verge of a division title and a 97- 99 win season?Why don't we debate next year's rotation in the off season?"Why do you care what people care about?My guess is that most of us are just trying to find ways to kill the time until tonight. What else is there to say about the Nats' current situation? We all know the deal.

  82. Bzl. - Oct 1, 2012 at 4:55 PM

    Thanks Scooter…Regarding Lannan vs. EJax, that ain't gonna happen in John's favor, no matter what he does tonight. Davey and Rizzo are simply not going to field a rotation of 75% lefties.I could see Lannan over Det, as a possibility, but that's predicated on JL being awesome tonight. GYFNG!

  83. NatsLady - Oct 1, 2012 at 4:58 PM

    Here is what happens. I wear my Natitude playoff jersey and playoff cap. Can't watch the game because I am teaching. Werth & Co. get six runs in the first inning against Kendrick who we've owned. Davey, smarter than the average bear, has a quick hook if John-boy falters, and he throws in everything so Gio won't have to pitch tomorrow. We pull it out 6-5 after Clip makes everyone nervous and Storen doesn't. Then we rest until Saturday or Sunday.

  84. Section 3, My Sofa - Oct 1, 2012 at 5:05 PM

    Which is not to imply that even that matters, right? I mean, can't everyone just have his or her own fandom, for his or her own reasons? Let's not get all fannier than thou, okay?Wouldn't that be French for "a maker of fans"? Or is that "fanisserie"?

  85. Feel Wood - Oct 1, 2012 at 5:05 PM

    Regarding Lannan vs. EJax, that ain't gonna happen in John's favor, no matter what he does tonight. Davey and Rizzo are simply not going to field a rotation of 75% lefties.If they're playing the Braves they could easily do that. And if Jackson doesn't step up his game in his start on Wednesday they won't even have to think twice about it.

  86. Section 3, My Sofa - Oct 1, 2012 at 5:06 PM

    Hey, I'm just killing time here…

  87. Feel Wood - Oct 1, 2012 at 5:07 PM

    The Kardashian family has made a career out of being fannier than thou.

  88. NatsLady - Oct 1, 2012 at 5:07 PM

    The Nat win 6-5 because even though Davey has told the hitters 1,000 times they should add on runs, they don't. And even though McCatty has told the relievers 1,000 times not to give up HR's they do. So there you are…

  89. Section 3, My Sofa - Oct 1, 2012 at 5:07 PM

    And yeah, I can well see them bringing Lannan if they go to Atlanta. They can change series to series, and they don't have to announce it until the game is about to start. They usually do, but they don't have to.

  90. natsfan1a - Oct 1, 2012 at 5:08 PM

    I'm not going to make it a thing, either, but, what he said. Scooter said…Which is not to imply that even that matters, right? I mean, can't everyone just have his or her own fandom, for his or her own reasons?I promise, I don't intend to make this a thing. Just … gah. Let's not get all fannier* than thou, okay?October 01, 2012 12:42 PM

  91. Section 3, My Sofa - Oct 1, 2012 at 5:09 PM

    The Kardashian family has made a career out of being fannier than thou. That's how I learned the word calligyptian. See, this [stuff]'s educational. Brush up your Shakespeare.

  92. natsfan1a - Oct 1, 2012 at 5:11 PM

    Or those whose fannies are, er, never mind. :-)Section 3, My Sofa said… Wouldn't that be French for "a maker of fans"? Or is that "fanisserie"? October 01, 2012 1:05 PM

  93. natsfan1a - Oct 1, 2012 at 5:11 PM

    Oh, Feel Wood got there first. Never mind. :-)

  94. Section 3, My Sofa - Oct 1, 2012 at 5:12 PM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  95. Section 3, My Sofa - Oct 1, 2012 at 5:14 PM

    Oh, Feel Wood got there first. Never mind. :-)FeelWood got to Kardashian's fannies first? The things you learn in here.

  96. natsfan1a - Oct 1, 2012 at 5:16 PM

    Which brings to mind an anecdote my dear departed mother used to tell about seeing Kiss Me Kate in a Chicago theater. I'm pretty sure Rocky Graziano was involved in that number somehow. Great lyrics. But I digress.Section 3, My Sofa said…See, this [stuff]'s educational. Brush up your Shakespeare.October 01, 2012 1:09 PM

  97. Laddie Blah Blah - Oct 1, 2012 at 5:16 PM

    "Unfortunately the numbers don't support what you say."JD, 4-0 in 5 starts are the numbers that matter. And 2 of those 4 were in games that were critical to the Nats. The numbers don't tell the whole story.

  98. natsfan1a - Oct 1, 2012 at 5:17 PM

    Good thing I wasn't taking a sip of water just then. Because it would be all over my screen now.FeelWood got to Kardashian's fannies first? The things you learn in here.

  99. Section 3, My Sofa - Oct 1, 2012 at 5:20 PM

    We'd better just think about The Game.

  100. natsfan1a - Oct 1, 2012 at 5:20 PM

    Wait, maybe it was Marciano. Um. Yeah, that's it. The Game. Heh. :-)

  101. Laddie Blah Blah - Oct 1, 2012 at 5:23 PM

    JDChecked Lannan's stats, and he has not given up a HR, at all, over 27 innings in 5 games. If you are going to cite the stats, cite them all. If you discount the Dodger's game, where Foster was squeezing him, John is issuing walks at only a 2.6 per game rate.

  102. Scooter - Oct 1, 2012 at 5:34 PM

    Laddie Blah Blah said…If you are going to cite the stats, cite them all.And then said …If you discount the Dodger's game …Hee hee.Yeah, I need a game.

  103. Section 3, My Sofa - Oct 1, 2012 at 5:35 PM

    1a, we're in RF foul ball territory, 136 IIRC. Gotta be early for the Teddy eyeblack stickers (have to confess I was hoping for the tube of greasepaint instead, but that did seem like even less of an attraction as a marketing mcguffin.

  104. ehay2k - Oct 1, 2012 at 5:35 PM

    Lannan's walk rate is also a tad inflated because he will pitch around a guy to get to the weaker hitter behind him. Possibly something he learned from Livo.Our flame-throwing guys want to take it to everyone. To each his own, as long as it is effective.

  105. ehay2k - Oct 1, 2012 at 5:37 PM

    Sofa – the Harper eye-black was way to expensive due to the extra material costs.

  106. natsfan1a - Oct 1, 2012 at 5:41 PM

    We're in Upper Veckian 417. Haven't yet decided whether, or how, to deploy the eyeblack stickers, should I snag some. :-)

  107. natsfan1a - Oct 1, 2012 at 5:41 PM

    Oh, right. One for each eye. (slaps forehead) Stupid, stupid! :-)

  108. natsfan1a - Oct 1, 2012 at 5:44 PM

    Um, hi. Welcome to The Natsfan1a Show. I'm…natsfan1a…and, my guest tonight is…one of the…greatest Nationals ballplayers…uh, baseball players…I guess, third basemen, ever. [Smacks herself] G*D! That sounds stupid! G*d, I'm an idiot! I never know how to start these things!

  109. natsfan1a - Oct 1, 2012 at 5:44 PM

    Uh, 7:05 game time, right? Got it. Heh.

  110. JD - Oct 1, 2012 at 6:04 PM

    That's the thing Laddie; I can't discount the Dodgers game because that was classic Lannan. 2 outs and no one on; base hit by Victorino (I think); then ultra careful to Kemp and a walk (should have gone after him because the worse that can happen is a 2 run homer), then super careful to Gonzalez and another walk; then 2 – 0 on Hanley and before you know it it's 4 – 0 Dodgers. I think Lannan is a decent bottom of the rotation pitcher but let's not forget that he has fringy stuff and so so control. The fact that he hasn't given up a home run is the only reason he has managed to escape more serious damage but I suspect that this is not sustainable and is not consistent with his career performance so the home runs are coming but hopefully not tonight.

  111. JD - Oct 1, 2012 at 6:08 PM

    Bowdenball, You are right; you can discuss next year's rotation if you'd like as well as 1st base and center field. I have lived and died with this team for over 40 years and I promised myself that if/when we get to the promised land I will absolutely live in the moment. We are this close to winning the division which for me would be 'mission accomplished' and then I can soak in the playoffs knowing that nothing can take this season away from us.

  112. NatsNut - Oct 1, 2012 at 6:10 PM

    I see you got that coffee this morning, 1a.;)

  113. natsfan1a - Oct 1, 2012 at 6:20 PM

    And how. Also Diet Dr. Pepper. How could you tell? :-)NatsNut said… I see you got that coffee this morning, 1a. ;)

  114. NatsNut - Oct 1, 2012 at 6:25 PM

    Between you and 1a and sofa, my computer screen is glad I'm not drinking water too.Scooter said…I promise, I don't intend to make this a thing. Just … gah. Let's not get all fannier* than thou, okay?* Yes, MJR, we can make up words. Heck, for some of us, it's practically our raison d'coming-here.

  115. JaneB - Oct 1, 2012 at 6:28 PM

    John gets the ball tonight. That's as far as I am seeing, and I will be screaming like the devil for him. What a great story it will make for him to have the mound, and for them to clinch tonight. No matter who pitches next week. He was so clutch in this two games this summer when we needed him to be, I believe he is equal to it.Go John! Keep those balls on the ground. Wish I could head to the stadium now, instead of 90 minutes from now. Dunno what I'll do when I get there but I can't stand waiting anymore,GYFNG!

  116. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 1, 2012 at 6:31 PM

    I'm with the people trying to take their mind off of tonight but I will give some current thoughts.Hope the Nats hitters blast Kendrick and make it a laugher. Get Lannan to 80 pitches and after that play it situationally with the bullpen.Davey needs to put thus one away and rest everyone.

  117. sjm308 - Oct 1, 2012 at 6:35 PM

    You guys crack me up!!Really bored today waiting to leave for the game. The one thing I will not do is get anything related to Teddy until the unleash the beast and let him win. Next to the wave, its the worst thing at the park. Read an article in the Sunday post about politicians and political writers/talking heads who are torn between the Nats and the debates. Loved the ending when Charles Krauthamer (who I am not crazy about) put down the wave as well.Anyway – here it comes – hopefully for the last time this season (at least part of it)Go Nats!! Score First!! Win the Division!!

  118. Theophilus T. S. - Oct 1, 2012 at 6:46 PM

    Somebody cited Jackson's post-season record: 1-1, 5.60 ERA. Helluva resume.

  119. Dave - Oct 1, 2012 at 6:47 PM

    So I'm sitting here supervising a last-period study hall, having done all my lesson plans for tomorrow and unable to leave until 4:00.Gotta go by the house on the way to Nats Park and get whatever delivery number the UPS guy left, so they leave the package at the UPS station in Chantilly–which, saints be praised, is right on my way from home to school.Yes. I need a baseball game really badly. Preferably with 6 runs in the bottom of the 1st. Then a pitchers' duel the rest of the way.

  120. Taino in DC - Oct 1, 2012 at 6:53 PM

    Tonight's win will complete a long circle that began in the trailers at RFK . Still hard to believe that's how this franchise started , the team store was a trailer in the parking lot.:)

  121. NatsLady - Oct 1, 2012 at 6:54 PM

    I have sat near Krauthammer several times. Don't agree with his politics, but he's definitely a fan. Sometimes his TV buddies come by to chat.

  122. natsfan1a - Oct 1, 2012 at 7:00 PM

    I remember the trailer well. :-)

  123. sjm308 - Oct 1, 2012 at 7:01 PM

    WHOOOOO HOOOO!!(sorry MichelleS)Tickets just arrived!!Interesting layout. Everything from an NL Tiebreaker game – Wildcard game – 3 home games for the NLDS – 4 Home Games for the NLCS and of Course Games 1,2,6 & 7 for the World Series.It is also interesting that the Tiebreaker Game is priced higher than the Wildcard & NLDS which are all the same price. It doubles for the NLCS and then another $30 increase for the WS.Again – WHOOOO!!! HOOOO!!!

  124. NatsLady - Oct 1, 2012 at 7:06 PM

    You got the WS tickets? I thought that was separate. Well, OK then. Hope mine are there when I get home.

  125. MicheleS - Oct 1, 2012 at 7:09 PM

    SJM308.. feel free.. that package is really sweet!NatsLady.. UPS won't drop it off, you have to sign for it.

  126. sjm308 - Oct 1, 2012 at 7:19 PM

    NatsLady – I was also surprised to see the WS tickets but I think it makes sense. They just won't bill us until that scenario occurs. I of course hope to use them but they will make a neat poster framed if not!

  127. baseballswami - Oct 1, 2012 at 7:22 PM

    I was glad to read in the Post that there are people who are much more important than I am that are also afflicted with Nats-fan-itis. I have confessed that I did not handle September well and I am just miserable. For those of you who think this is fun – I admire you. I have some off-season conditioning of my nerves to do.There have been fun games, fun innings, fun moments – but overall, I have the Nats on my mind all the time and it's making me cranky. Game 162 last year traumatized me and I have nightmares about it. Please, Nats, put me out of my misery. Do it now – I beg of you. I want the Nats to win out and I want the Braves to lose out. Maybe if I ask for it all I will get that one tiny thing that I need……. I am so pathetic. John, dear John, John LannEn with an E , my buddy, my pal, help a fan out here….I have always thought very highly of you – really…

  128. MicheleS - Oct 1, 2012 at 7:24 PM

    Swami.. I carry Pepcid tablets with me. It helps.

  129. Scooter - Oct 1, 2012 at 7:25 PM

    Swami, I don't think anyone is more important than you.(Less worried, perhaps, yes, but not more important.)

  130. Feel Wood - Oct 1, 2012 at 7:31 PM

    sjm308 said… NatsLady – I was also surprised to see the WS tickets but I think it makes sense. They just won't bill us until that scenario occurs.No, they'll bill the WS on/about Oct 10, unless the Nats are totally eliminated before then. I specifically asked my rep about that when I bought the strip. And it sounded like they would have to be eliminated on or before the play-in game in order for all the processing to take place to stop that 10/10 billing. So most likely we will pay that $400+ for the WS and get some or all of that back if those games aren't played.

  131. sjm308 - Oct 1, 2012 at 7:31 PM

    Swami – while this is fun, don't think you are the Lone Ranger on the worry part! Nothing a couple of good to very good pitching performances won't change though. This is new territory for all nats fans.

  132. NatsLady - Oct 1, 2012 at 7:33 PM

    If he's there the super will sign for it. He's an O's fan, so probably won't steal them….

  133. natsfan1a - Oct 1, 2012 at 7:34 PM

    Your post made me lol, swami, but in a good way. I curly w tonight would be ever so awesome.Veering OT here: imho, politicians aren't more important than any of us (and I don't care which side of the aisle they're on, fwiw). Now, whether they think they are more important is another story. But I digress. :-)Is it time for baseball yet?

  134. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 1, 2012 at 7:34 PM

    MicheleS, you crack me up. Fridays meltdown followed by losing the lead on Saturday followed by yesterday's blowout has my stomach in knots and my sleep in deprivation.Living it!

  135. natsfan1a - Oct 1, 2012 at 7:35 PM

    Make that "a" curly w. I curly w tonight would be ever so awesome.

  136. alm - Oct 1, 2012 at 7:36 PM

    Heading to the park soon – not soon enough, but I feel guilty. When I sat down to watch the game yesterday with my wife I said "I hope they clinch tomorrow when I am at the Park". She was shocked and said – "so you are rooting against them?" I said of course I wasn't but it would be nice to be in that moment when they clinch. So blam me – not Det – for yesterday. I promise I will never be selfish again oh baseball gods, just let me off the hook this once and let them win TONIGHT.Go Nats

  137. natsfan1a - Oct 1, 2012 at 7:37 PM

    I don't carry Pepcid but I try to remember to carry lozenges so that my voice holds up for cheering. :-)

  138. Dave - Oct 1, 2012 at 7:44 PM

    Okay, so yesterday was alm's fault. Understood.Yesterday on the Twitter I resolved not to utter the six-letter verb that starts with a "c" and ends with an "h" until they actually do it. I used that word too much yesterday and Saturday, and it didn't happen.I hope they win tonight. If they do, then they…NO, NO, can't say it!

  139. natsfan1a - Oct 1, 2012 at 7:47 PM

    then they will have made all of us very, very happy. There, I fixed it. :-)

  140. Scooter - Oct 1, 2012 at 7:57 PM

    Don't worry, alm. A couple weeks back I hit a homer off Tyler Clippard to cost the Nats game two of a double-header.I think I've since been forgiven.

  141. ehay2k - Oct 1, 2012 at 8:07 PM

    Million-dollar idea – Bourbon-flavored Pepcid tablets. Small market, but very high consumption rates!

  142. natsfan1a - Oct 1, 2012 at 8:11 PM

    Your swing on that one was awesome, Scooter. :-)Scooter said… Don't worry, alm. A couple weeks back I hit a homer off Tyler Clippard to cost the Nats game two of a double-header. I think I've since been forgiven. October 01, 2012 3:57 PM

  143. Anna Peregrina - Oct 1, 2012 at 8:36 PM

    natsfan, was Scooter's swing as awesome as Morse's "virtual swing"?

  144. Anna Peregrina - Oct 1, 2012 at 8:36 PM

    And can I stay awake till 3 a.m. and still teach school tomorrow? Life in the UK is tough!

  145. Scooter - Oct 1, 2012 at 8:42 PM

    That's setting the bar awfully high, Anna.Let's just say it was a smooth stroke.

  146. lowcountry - Oct 2, 2012 at 1:54 AM

    Happy Birthday 1a! Washington Nationals Division Champions!

  147. natsfan1a - Oct 2, 2012 at 1:14 PM

    Well, Scooter *did* only get the one RBI. :-)Anna Peregrina said… natsfan, was Scooter's swing as awesome as Morse's "virtual swing"? October 01, 2012 4:36 PM Scooter said… That's setting the bar awfully high, Anna. Let's just say it was a smooth stroke. October 01, 2012 4:42 PM Scooter said…

Archives

NLDS: NATIONALS VS. GIANTS

FRI: Game 1 at Washington, 3:07 p.m. (FS1)
SAT: Game 2 at Washington, 5:37 p.m. (FS1)
MON: Game 3 at San Francisco, TBA (MLBN)
TUE: Game 4 at San Francisco, TBA (FS1)*
THU: Game 5 at Washington, TBA (FS1)*
*if necessary

Mark joins Rob Carlin and Joe Orsulak every Thursday at 4 p.m. on Comcast SportsNet for a half-hour show on the Nats, Orioles and rest of MLB. Re-airs Thursdays at 11:30 p.m., Saturdays at 9 a.m. and Sundays at 11:30 a.m.

ON THE RADIO

As ESPN-980 AM's Nats Insider, Mark makes daily appearances on the station's various shows. Here's the 2014 schedule (subject to change)...

MON: 12:45 p.m.
TUE: 2:30 p.m.
WED: 4:30 p.m.
THU: 2:30 p.m.
FRI: 1:30 p.m., 5:30 p.m.
SAT: 10:30 a.m.

*All times Eastern. You can also listen to the station on 94.3 FM, 92.7 FM and online at ESPN980.com. Click here for past audio clips.

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